During a private event at the 2014 Annual Meeting of the World Economic
Forum, leadership of Education Above All (EAA), a global initiative of
Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, made a call for the world's
business and philanthropy leaders to accelerate the effort to provide
and finance quality basic education for the world's estimated 57 million
out of school children. With fewer than 700 days before the Millennium
Development Goals deadline, EAA highlighted the long-term impact of
investment in primary education on GDP as the imperative for immediate
and sustained action.
Current funding for basic education in low income countries covers less
than 10% of the amount required, leaving a funding gap of $24 billion
per year. To close the gap, EAA aims to link proven programmatic success
with innovative funding mechanisms to open opportunities for new sources
of funds - from philanthropists, official development assistance,
investors, foundations and business.
Commenting on the need for new investment in education, Dr. Abdullah
Al-Kubaisi, Special Envoy for Education Above All, said, "EAA has come
to the World Economic Forum to call for new investment to support
education. In the past the public and private sectors have stood up and
made significant progress on issues of great social and economic
importance, such as public health. We have today the same chance with
primary education - to prevent lost opportunity and reduce poverty.
Education can transform individual lives, and also economic outcomes for
communities and nations."
Launched in 2012, Educate A Child, a global program of Her Highness'
Education Above All Foundation aims to significantly reduce the
estimated 57 million children worldwide who are denied their fundamental
right to education. EAC projects reach countries that account for nearly
70 percent of all out of school children. Its focus is on replicating
and scaling-up successful quality programs, promoting innovative
approaches and encouraging collaboration, to ensure the best outcomes
for children and their communities.
To date, EAC has supported more than 2 million out of school children
via 44 co-funded projects in 24 countries with a goal of reaching 10
million by the end of the 2015/2016 school year.
"As the world emerges from the long recession, political and economic
leaders are turning their attention to growth. Primary education
provides an investment platform that pays dividends to societies well
into the future. Today we are in the process of establishing a new fund
for education; a mechanism that will bring investment from new funding
sources to help us accelerate efforts to close the out of school
children gap," said Marcio Barbosa, CEO of Education Above All.
EAA leadership highlighted the economic imperative for sustained action
on education. Lack of primary education stands as a barrier to
developing countries from an economic perspective as it impacts GDP. A
study commissioned by Educate A Child indicates the dramatic impact
primary education can have on economies. As a percentage of GDP, the
economic cost of out of school children ranges from country to country:
from 0.30% in India (the world's tenth-largest economy at $1.8 trillion)
to 19.2% in Nigeria (a fast-developing economy of $262 billion).
The event ended with an invitation for Davos leaders to join Her
Highness Sheikha Moza in Doha for a fundraising event in late April,
where new financial commitments will be made to education.
About Education Above All Foundation
Education Above All (EAA) is a global initiative founded and chaired by
Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar. Founded in 2012, EAA is
the umbrella for a number of international programs, including Educate A
Child, Al Fakhoora and Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict
(PEIC) that protect, promote and facilitate access to education. EAA
programs work to ensure that all children in the developing world -
particularly the 57 million who are currently out of school - will be
able to realize their right to education. Through capacity-building,
resource mobilization, and multi-sectoral partnerships and alliances,
EAA addresses educational issues with a special commitment to the most
underserved populations of the world.
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